Germanwings 9525, the crash too many

An alert from the newspaper Le Monde and a big shiver invaded my body. This is how I learned about the crash of Germanwings Flight 9525 this morning. This scheduled flight of the Lufthansa Low Cost airline was from Barcelona to Dusseldorf and carried 144 passengers and 6 crew members.

A fast and silent descent

After taking off from Barcelona airport at 09:00 UTC, the flight made a normal climb and then a cruise, before starting a rapid and continuous descent from 09:32 UTC to 09:40 UTC, the time of the crash.
Flight path of flight 4U9525
This descent was made without any radio exchange. This silence leads to several possible scenarios:

  • The terrorist hypothesis: the plane was taken in hostage by criminals to bring it to the ground. The bomb is excluded, because it would not have generated a descent;
  • The mechanical hypothesis having led to a problem of pressurization: the pilots were in a situation of hypoxia making them unconscious. But in this case, there is no reason for the plane to go down by itself, so quickly;
  • The serious mechanical hypothesis (such as a fire) also affects the communication mechanisms and therefore prevents the transmission of any distress message.

At this stage, however, too few elements are at our disposal.

A rather easy investigation, compared to recent well-publicized crashes

Crash scene 4U9525
The investigation turns out to be rather easy. Even if the first images of the crash scene show totally scattered debris testifying to the violence of the crash, one of the first two black boxes has already been found, and the French authorities assure the greatest speed in the investigation on this accident.

And to tell the truth, we are all eager to know what really happened in that cockpit.

In any case, Bertrand and I join in the grief of the families and staff of the Lufthansa Group.

Olivier Delestre-Levai
Olivier Delestre-Levai
Olivier has been into airline blogging since 2010. First a major contributor to the FlyerTalk forum, he created the FlyerPlan website in July 2012, and writes articles with a major echo among airline specialists. He now co-runs the TravelGuys blog with Bertrand, focusing on travel experience and loyalty programs.

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